There are only a few skincare brands so iconic and impressive that they can boast a devout celeb following. I’m talking about the likes of La Mer, Augustinus Bader, and yes, Vintner’s Daughter. For anyone who might not know, the latter is a luxury skincare brand that uses plant-based, botanical ingredients to treat and transform the skin. Its Active Botanical Serum ($325) is so good, it’s widely reported that A-listers like Hailey Bieber, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Tracee Ellis Ross use it. That was the brand’s first product. Then, it introduced the Active Treatment Essence ($225), which brought with it a similar amount of fanfare and the “it changed my skin” sort of testimonials.  Recently, the brand launched its third product, a cleanser, and after using it for a couple of months, I can say that it’s genuinely game-changing. While a cleanser might sound like the most exciting skincare product ever, this one has formed the basis for my daily skincare routine and I’ve seen a visible improvement in my skin since using it. Ahead, learn why this cleanser is so special. 

Here it is—the new Active Renewal Cleanser. Just like all other Vintner’s Daughter products, this one contains a bevy of gentle, yet effective plant ingredients. There’s alfalfa and bilberry to soothe and provide antioxidants to the skin; cypress and butcher’s broom to reduce redness; ginkgo biloba leaf to support collagen production: Kakadu plum, dandelion, and citrus peel to brighten the skin, and finally, mango seed butter and echinacea. The former softens the skin while the latter encourages the skin to produce hyaluronic acid. 

Before waxing poetic about why I love this cleanser so much, I feel the need to provide some context. My skin is prone to dehydration and redness. In fact, I have a mild case of rosacea that flares up when I get too hot, too cold, too stressed, too tired, or generally get out of balance in my routine (it’s the bane of my existence). The redness is always at its worst on my cheeks and chin. Because of this, I’m always cautious when it comes to testing new products, but cleansers specifically. If a cleanser is too harsh or stripping, it’s sure to cause a flare-up of redness and I’m sure to head straight for my foundation and concealer.  The brand’s founder, April Gargiulo, assured me that this wouldn’t further irritate my skin thanks to its combination of whole plant ingredients as well as its unique milky texture that acts as a double cleanse in one. And she was right. After using this non-stop for a couple of months, I can tell my skin is more hydrated, more even, and more radiant, yet there’s no excess irritation or redness happening. I took this picture immediately after washing my face, which explains some of the redness…trust me, it’s not irritation. In fact, it dissipated after a couple of minutes and I was left with a bright, glowing complexion. This cleanser makes my skin feel soft, smooth, and most importantly, clean. 

The genius is in the combination of oil- and water-soluble ingredients, which is how it does the work of a double cleanse in a single step. This stuff removes sweat, sunscreen, dirt, oil, and makeup in a single step. As soon as the milky texture hits my skin, I can literally see my sunscreen and makeup start to separate and dissolve. 

It’s worth noting that I used the cleanser by itself for many weeks before introducing the brand’s Active Treatment Essence and Active Botanical Serum into my skincare routine. As for the former, Gargiulo recommended I try it, but before I did, she warned me, “it literally smells like kombucha. You’re going to think it will irritate your skin, but it won’t.” Again, she was right. Even though it has a strong, fermented smell, it hydrates and soothes my irritation-prone skin. I simply spritz it into the palm of my hand, press my hands together, and apply it all over my face and neck. 

The reason it smells like kombucha is something called “Phyto Ferment​,” which results from a two-week fermentation process that produces beneficial probiotics and increases nutrient absorption. Then, there are the other ingredients, which include stabilized vitamin C, B vitamins, hyaluronic acid, probiotics, plant stem cells, and various superfood ingredients. 

The final step in my routine is the Active Botanical Serum—the original Vintner’s Daughter product. It’s touted as an all-in-one serum that provides everything from minerals to brightening vitamins, free radical-fighting antioxidants, and moisturizing fatty acids. 

The serum feels like a face oil and it moisturizes just as deeply as one. That’s why I only use it at night. During the day, I found that it makes my skin look a little too shiny for my liking when combined with a glowy sunscreen formula I use. Even though I’ve only been using it once a day, I can tell my skin is brighter, softer, and evenly visibly plumper. 

I love that this cleanser offers a burst of vitamin C. The subtle citrus scent never fails to wake me up in the morning. 

This cleanser has ceramides in it to moisturize dry skin. 

This gel cleanser doesn’t strip my skin.

This cleanser is so gentle on my skin.

This is a drugstore classic.

This is my favorite oil cleanser for a double cleanse.

I’ve literally been using this cleanser since I was 16.

Up next: This Trending Ingredient Instantly Calms Redness, so I Shopped the Best Products. 

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